The Writer's, artist's & reader's Guild

Face of Fear: Chapter six

faceoffear5

When Anthony turned six his adoptive father, Wayan, came to the hut one Saturday evening carrying a gift. He carefully tiptoed into the common area where they were gathered around the open fire for dinner and he gently placed an oblong object on the floor before the young child’s feet. It was wrapped in fabric of red and blue intricately sown together like a very detailed quilt. As Anthony tilted his head and considered the present the warrior told him to unwrap it. With care he did so and revealed two scabbards lying within, one smaller and one larger and with big eyes he watched as Wayan unsheathed two wavy blades and was filled with awe at the how the light from the fire glinted in the steel and cast golden reflections in wonderful patterns on the walls. The weapons were the Kris, a traditional dagger of the region, original from Java and the larger one was a Kelis a double edged sword from the Philippines and being the famous warrior that he was Wayan had traveled and battled all over the islands as a young man and through this amassed quite the collection of weaponry. He informed Anthony that it was time for the next step in his physical education and whatever protests Charlotte might voice were quickly shut down. The decision was made to, initially, keep the training with the blades on weekends and keep them in the hut so that the servants at the house would not see them and report to Mr. Hill. It was difficult for Anthony to keep the training a secret once he returned to his home and the tutelage of Mr. Mahr. During the first week he found himself drifting off in class, dreaming about parries and strikes, twists, turns and evasions as well as gutting the imaginary demons of Balinese folk lore. His teacher would stare at the boy when he gazed off through the window, in the direction of the village. He knew then that the boy was more Balinese than he would ever be Western and that it was fine. He of course knew nothing of the violence that occupied the mind of the child with the serene smile and it is quite likely that it had not mattered at that moment. He quietly wondered what was in store for him. He was very much innocent of what was going on in the world outside. The rise of fascism in Europe, militarism in Japan and general hate in the world. It had been one of the reasons Mr. Mahr had moved around as much as he had the past years. Somewhere along the road in his career he had become despondent when it came to educating the future, frequently he had asked himself if it was worth trying when it all seemed so bleak. Teaching proper English, French or Latin to high society ladies was at least mind numbing activities where he was surrounded by inane chatter about gossip. His contact with Anthony Hill had changed his outlook on life. The innocence of a child so completely removed from the cruelty of the world and fairly clueless when it came to his own Father’s proclivities had caused him to try to envision the world in a similar fashion. It had worked and he felt he was a better man for it. So he let him drift off from time to time for he believed the boy dreamed of the wonders of the world, when he in actuality dreamed of slaying demons.

======

It was one of those mornings. The sun shone right through the glass on to his face, he had forgotten to pull the drapes when he got in, or to be more precise, he had been so off kilter that he more than likely hadn’t bothered to do it. Geert turned over, with some difficulty because of his large frame and wiped drool from his chin with the back of his hand. He lay flat on his back and stared up at the ceiling without any concept of time. After his talk with Jensen, Charles and Thorne he had hurried back to the hotel and had played catch up with the young ladies and socialites there and he had caught up and surpassed them. He felt now, as he wondered what time it was, that he might have overdone it this time, both food and drink wise.

‘Good morning Mr. Geert’ A deep voice said that startled him and made him sweat as ice ran through his veins.He scrambled quicker than he had ever moved before and instantly shuffled up towards the head board getting is feet tangled in the sheets. The sunshine from streaming through the tall windows blinded him and he tried to quint to let his eyes adjust. He tried to focus through the blurred vision and slowly shapes became sharper and the scene grew out of mere distortion. By the window stood a round table on one ornately carved leg, flanked by two armchairs, he would sit in them from time to time to drink his morning coffee, otherwise they mostly filled the role of storage for discarded clothes. The left chair was now occupied by something other than his wardrobe. In the light of the morning it was no more than a silhouette, but one that was all too familiar to him.
Black Diamond, for it was he, cut an impressive form straight back, wide shoulders, a body poured into a black suit and hair carefully combed to create a part on the left side. He rose and picked up a cup and saucer from the table next to him and as he moved towards the bed he became more of a person than just a black form. Now Geert saw the black suit with the matching tie, white shirt and the pin on the lapel shaped as a diamond with a white skull in the center; the symbol of the organization that bore his name. The Diamond’s age had always been difficult for Geert to ascertain, having that forever youthful appearance and the domino mask that covered the upper portion of his face naturally made things difficult. That coupled with the fact that the man seemingly had arrived in town, unannounced, one day and taken control of the vacuum left by the previous mob family made him a figure steeped in mystery.
It wasn’t the first time Geert had been startled by his boss, he had an uncanny knack for popping up at the most inopportune time, but at the same time always when something was afoot. It was no surprise he was now standing before Geert, not after the events of the other day, and the fact that The Diamond himself could walk through the hotel and past the guards, men who were tried and true in their loyalty, was no surprise either. Most of the men at this level, ones who were closest to Geert, knew The Black Diamond and recognized him on sight and would have gotten out of his way had he walked down the hallways of the house.
‘A busy night I take it Mr. Geert.’ The Diamond said in his baritone. ‘And although I would have liked to avoid waking you at noon there are pressing matters that need to be attended to. So if you would please rise from your place of rest and slip into a robe I have ordered breakfast through room service so that we may do this in an orderly fashion.’ He handed Geert a blue and white striped bath robe and turned away. Geert gingerly rolled off the edge of the bed, the preferred method on any given day, but more so on a day like this.
‘So what do you have for me?’ Black Diamond was back in the armchair with one leg slung over the other and the cup and saucer once again in his hands.
‘Well Sir.’ Geert began and lumbered over to the opposite seat. ‘My source within the police department had very little information to give when it came to the case. It seems as if they are keeping the lid on tightly on this one, but he is working on unscrewing it. What we do know is that the attacker used some form of knife to hurt our guys, as well as the mics and that there was one survivor, but I don’t know who yet or where he is for that matter.’
Black Diamond nodded as he listened to the information, but did not move a muscle in his face to indicate any emotion. He was silent for a moment and stared into his tea cup before speaking.
“And what measures have you taken to make sure that we find the one or ones who perpetrated the attack on us, as well as the Lonergans?’ He said while still keeping his masked eyes at the cup.
‘I have enlisted the aid of three freelance gentlemen who I have used previously.’ Geert was feeling more confident now, especially since he believed he had covered his bases. ‘They have been instructed to find the identity of the survivor and through doing this it should give us a lead on the killers. I believe that the survivor is none other than our most experienced soldier Baz Peterson and he would surely point us in the right direction.’
‘I am sorry to have to rain on your parade Mr. Geert, but this information is not new to me.’ Black Diamond rose and put down the cup. Geert began to sweat, the kind of dirty perspiration that forced itself out ones pores the morning after. His boss had always had an uncanny knack of being several steps ahead of him. It always made him wonder why he was kept around at all, but somebody needed to be the eventual fall guy and as long as Geert was swimming in women, food and drink that possible future didn’t bother him. He managed to cover his own ass often enough that he was secure.
‘Excuse me Sir?’ Geert said.
‘The survivor of the attack was a man using the name of Hammer someone your precious Peterson had recruited some time ago. I assume you know the name?’ Geert nodded thoughtfully. ‘Well it appears his real name is Martin Lindquist, a young police officer from Michigan and had been tasked with infiltrating our little band of merry men. He is currently under the care of the good doctors at St. Mary’s Hospital and he has already started talking to local law enforcement. I could potentially lead them to us, depending on what Peterson revealed, but he is also sitting on valuable intelligence about our new found enemy, if that be the case.’
‘You want me to call off the search?’ Geert gripped the armrests, ready to catapult himself into action.
‘No, that has already been taken care of. Your trio of freelancers have been met with and rerouted. Whatever the infiltrator has revealed to the police will be known to us through sources other than yours, but seeing as he most likely is sitting on quite a bit of information he must be dealt with. I am leaving you make sure that he does not leave the hospital other than in a body bag.’ He walked into the hallway that inevitably lead out of the room. ‘ And Geert,’
‘Yes Sir?’ Geert said in a hoarse voice.
‘Pay the men handsomely, out of your own pocket of course, when the job is done.’
‘Yes Sir.’
The Black Diamond turned around and left the room unceremoniously and Geert, once he was convinced his boss was not going to return he ran to the bathroom and vomited in the toilet.

=====

Tony was sitting in the office he shared with Gabe Posen and was tapping a pencil against the notes for the evenings broadcast. According to them there was nothing more to report in regards to the shooting Downtown. He picked up his cup bearing the WRJN logo and sipped the now cold beverage, why was cold coffee so unpleasant in flavor when it was essentially the same thing as the warm counterpart. Peering over the rim and with his lips still pressed to it he let the liquid trickle back into the cup. Instead he leaned forward, tented his fingers and stared out over the busy city through his window. The contents he had brought with him from the Police impound lot had proven to be cocaine, just like he had suspected, so far so good, but who was it for. The Lonergans were obviously selling it, but they were merely the middle hands in the transaction, he had established that earlier. The product came from down south, crossing the border and then traveling through Texas and changing hands in Chicago where the Irish gang had its home base. He would deal with them and their leader Aiden O’Shea at a later date, but he needed to halt those who would spread it throughout the city first. He picked up the notepad and viewed the image he had drawn there. It was a replica of the brand that had been stamped on the crates. A diamond, very much like the one you would see on a deck of cards with a skull placed in the center of it. He wouldn’t win any awards for his artistic abilities he realized, but if he could show it to a few of the criminals of the City they might know something, they might point him in some direction. Then there was the matter of the survivor. Chief Swan had mentioned six victims, but Tony had gone back in his mind and was able to recall the events of that night and he had come to the conclusion that seven men had fallen to his blade. If the Chief counted six bodies that must have meant that one survived, badly injured, but alive none the less. That person was sitting on valuable information and somehow he needed to get in touch with him for questioning. The horror of the mask would help him with that no problem, but he needed to figure out how to find the name. He spun around in his office chair and faced the door leading out of the office, the Police Station would have the information he sought. He would have to go there, case it right after the news and break in tonight. That’s what he do. He put his hands behind his head and sighed with an amused look on his face, so much in fact that Gabe Posen, who happened to walk into the room at that moment raised a confused eyebrow, but was silent since that was his way.

=====

St. Mary’s Hospital was one of the largest buildings on the block, as well it should have been, seeing as it serviced most of the populous of the city. It stood six stories tall and spread out over the entire block with its red brick, hiding behind young oak trees that lined the sidewalk. Two wings stretched out on wither side, like a horseshoe, mimicking a welcoming embrace to those in need  of assistance. A stone staircase in white lead from the sidewalk to the doors made of glass, only six or seven steps up, but enough to hinder those infirmed to climb them without a helping hand. The staircase was lined by a thick white railing leading all the way up to the entrance, the kind of resting place where statuesque lions might rest, but instead nurses or medical students would sit there in order to gossip and grab a quick smoke. It was a state of the art facility and there was many an aspiring doctor who wouldn’t mind being sent there for their final work practice before having to face the real world.
Three men in gray suits covered by light brown trench coats stood outside St. Mary’s hospital. They were leaning against their car while listening to the radio as the five o’clock news just came on. They were all smoking cigarettes and conversed with each other in low voices, hushed, almost like whispers as they watched people enter and exit the building. They payed special attention when two police officers walked past them, both of them carrying shotguns over their shoulders. Thorne tipped his hat and smiled at the men, who acknowledged him in return. When they disappeared behind the glass doors Jensen fished a pocket watch from his vest and looked at it and Charles quickly bounded up the steps and sat down on the stone railing, next to a young red headed candy striper, so that he a had a clear view through the doors. According to Jensen’s watch it took fifteen minutes for two other officers to exit the hospital. They too were armed, one carrying a shotgun in his arms and the other one with an old fashioned looking repeater rifle resting across his shoulders. Charles stroked his chin and leaned over to the girl and seemingly conversed with her in a soft voice. Thorne gave the new officers the same courtesy he had shown their colleagues and they responded in kind. The law men climbed into a police car that was parked down the street and drove off.
‘So it seems to me,’ Thorne dropped his cigarette on the sidewalk and stepped on it. ‘That two officers at a time is the limit of resources spent on this guy.’
‘It takes fifteen minutes for them to switch and I guess that entails briefing each other regarding any news.’ Jensen replied flicked ash on the ground. ‘Intervals of four hours so far, seems doable for us, of course depending on what the security situations is on the inside at least at night.’
‘Well we did see five security guards enter this morning and three leave. So I’m guessing they run a skeleton crew at night.’
Charles came towards them with a big grin on his face that only grew wider as he came closer to the car. He reached into his coat and produce a pack of smokes and lit one after having placing it between his teeth.
‘So what’s the score?’ Thorne asked.
‘Well apart from the fact that I’m picking her up at seven on Friday?’ Charles came back and showed all his teeth in his big smile, his buddies shrugged in unison. ‘From what she gathers the police officers always go to the fifth floor, that’s where they keep patients who have come out of surgery and need to be monitored. She doesn’t get to help out there only nurses do, but she has heard rumors from the ladies in the building that room 506 is the place that is heavily guarded. Two officers at a time, armed at all times.’
‘What of security, regular hospital security?’ Thorne asked.
‘According to her they only have three older men patrolling the hallways at night, but most of the time they hang out in the reception area on the first floor, playing cards. There are a few doctors on call, but they are most often in the basement area, where emergency cases go at night. Nurses sit on each floor, but only two per area. She is pretty certain that the officers do the rounds every hour on the hour, so the reception is most likely unmanned at those times.’
‘Excellent.’ Thorne’s grin was almost as wide as the one Charles wore. ‘Fellas, this may just be the easiest cash we ever made. We sneak in after midnight, if need be we take out the nurses and whatever guards we may encounter on the way and then deal with the officers, they are most likely the ones we have to be careful with, we take them down after the nurses and then finish Mr. Hammer in his bed.’
‘Easy as pie.’ Jensen mused. ‘Then I propose we take an extended vacation. We will be in high demand from the law after this.’
‘Right you are.’Thorne replied. ‘Now let’s scope out the building, so that we know what we’re dealing with tonight.’
‘We don’t need any unnecessary surprises.’ Charles chimed in and they left their car and walked towards St. Mary’s Hospital in order to get the lay of the land.

=====

The first floor of the police headquarters was bustling with activity. The main command center was basically and open space with desks littering the floor and that in turn were littered with files, papers and coffee cups. Secretaries, police officers and plain clothes detectives were running around handing stuff to each other, talking on the phone or just standing in front of chalk boards going over some case. At the far end, right opposite the big mahogany double doors that lead to the hive of activity was a dais and on it stood a desk, like a podium, that stretched from one side of the room to the other and behind it were secretaries and older police officers who barked orders, answered phones and handed documents to young boys, runners, who made sure the information went to the right person. On the left side of the command center was Chief Swan’s office and the door was closed and the blinds drawn.
Tony walked over to the dais and tried to avoid bumping in to those running around him, in his hands he was carrying a box of donuts from Bendtsen’s bakery on Washington and at times he was forced to lift it above his head so that it wouldn’t be sent flying across the room and land on some unfortunate detective’s desk. Once at the overlook area he turned around and exhaled, he thought the offices at WRJN could get busy at times, but working in this atmosphere every day would most likely kill him in the long run.
‘May I assist you in some way Sir?’ A cautious voice said behind him and Tony spun round to find a young man in a beard and dressed in a n ill fitting tan suit, a blue shirt and a black and white striped tie. With his dark brown hair, cut the same length as his facial hair the man looked like a disheveled grizzly bear. Having this figure looking down on him made Tony feel more than uncomfortable.
‘I am here to speak to Chief Swan if possible.’ He said. ‘I brought donuts.’ He added and held up the box.’
‘I see.’ The bear-man said and looked to a middle aged woman wearing horn rimmed glasses and with a shawl covering her shoulders. ‘Angie, is Chief Swan in?’
The woman looked at him over the rim of her glasses and sucked her gums in a distasteful manner. She then turned her judgmental gaze at Tony and raised her eyebrows in aquizzical expression. ‘Who is here to see the Chief?’ Her voice had all the nasal properties of a true Midwestern native, most likely from the northern part of the State. ‘Does he have an appointment?’
‘My name is Anthony Hill.’ Tony said with his best smile. ‘You might recognize my voice from the Five O’Clock News on WRJN, Your Radio Friend?’ He adjusted his voice to make it sound like the radio version of his regular diction.
‘Mr. Hill?’ The woman looked skeptical and riffled through some papers, she was obviously not impressed. ‘And what is the purpose of your visit?’
‘I would like to speak to the Chief in regards to what we spoke about on the radio, if possible?’ Tony’s voice went back to it’s natural tone and he looked at her with his best puppy dog eyes.
‘Chief Swan is busy at the moment, he has a guest, who had an appointment.’ The woman said and smiled smugly. ‘Then he has an engagement to attend with The Knights of Columbus, but if your lucky you might be able to speak to him the few seconds he is in transit.’
‘That would be great Miss, care for a donut, they’re fresh?’ He opened the box and smiled.
‘Mrs. Connors.’ The woman bit back. ‘And no thank you. Detective Glade, why don’t you show Mr. Hill to the office?’
Detective Glade, the man with the disheveled look hopped to and circled round the podium and down from the dais to stand next to Tony. ‘Follow me Mr. Hill.’ He said and moved through the throng of people.
‘Donut?’ Tony said and held out the box to Glade.
‘Don’t mind if I do.’ Glade replied and grabbed an eclair, as he bit into it cream filling burst from it and landed all over his suit. ‘Dammit’ He shouted. ‘Just my luck, this always happens to me. I’m going to clean myself up, this is the office, so I’ll leave you here. Is that alright Mr. Hill?’
‘Sure thing Detective Glade, thanks for the guided trip.’ Tony tried to avoid laughing at the slovenly detective as he vanished through the wild landscape that was the police station.
No sooner had his guide disappeared to clean himself up than the door to Chief Swan’s office opened and out stepped a man dressed in a dark suit followed by Swan. They both stopped in their tracks when they noticed Tony standing there with his box.
The first man appeared to be in his mid forties and wore his dark hair in a part on right side, with a few strand playfully falling over his forehead. Clean shaven and dapper he smiled at Tony and revealed the tiniest hints of wrinkles by his dark eyes. Chief Swan stuck out his hand and Tony took it in greeting.
‘Mr. Hill, what a surprise to see you here.’
‘I thought I’d stop by to discuss some details from yesterday Sir.’ Tony replied as he let go of the Chief’s hand.
‘Interesting, I am pressed for time though, but I can give you a few minutes. By the way, have you met Dr. Benton?’ Swan indicated the man standing next to him.
‘I have not had the pleasure.’ Tony replied and grabbed the doctor’s outstretched hand.
‘Delighted to meet you Mr. Hill, I often enjoy your news reports.’ Dr. Benton said in a soft voice.
‘The good Doctor runs one of the largest pharmaceutical producers in the Midwest and has set up base in our fair City.’
‘That is true.’ Benton nodded in agreement. ‘I have always wanted to own a house on the lake, one opened up here and the harbor in the City is perfect as a base of our operations. Proposed railway connections would make this a hub as well and it all plays very well into our plans.’
‘We were just discussing a fundraiser Dr. Benton and his company is holding this weekend to benefit widows of policemen. A very good cause, we need all the funds we can get.’
‘It’s the least we can do for our boys in blue. Have you received in invite Mr. Hill?’
‘I don’t believe so.’ Tony was taken aback at the question. He had always found himself standing on the outside of the higher circles. Being a newscaster, and fairly famous, at least among some people, he had not been invited into the group that Gabe Posner, Chief Swan or Vic Linden ran in. ‘Maybe it got lost in the mail.’ He continued and faked a laugh only to be met with a puzzled look from Benton and Swan.
‘Well consider yourself invited.’ Dr. Benton said and smiled again, a very infectious one. ‘Will you be bringing a date?’
‘No Sir.’ Tony almost blushed. ‘I do not have a young lady I’m seeing and my mother passed away several years ago.’
‘Well we’ll have to remedy that.’ Dr. Benton winked at him. ‘A man of your talents should not stay unwed for long. A card will land in your mailbox shortly Mr. Hill.’ Dr. Benton gave a short bow to Tony and Chief Swan. ‘I must unfortunately be moving along, there are pressing matters at hand, a business to run. Good Day Gentlemen.’
As they watched Dr. Benton leave Swan put a hand on Tony’s shoulder.
‘Step into my office Mr. Hill, I can give you my undivided attention for five minutes.’

=====

The command center was far from as bustling with activity at night as it was during the daylight hours. In fact there was no movement at all since those officers who occupied the building always stayed on the lower levels and detectives seldom worked at their desks past six p.m. Even the podium with its dais was abandoned and once in a while the phones would ring, only to remain unanswered, the call automatically transferred to the main desk in the lobby. The only light in the room came trickling in from below the great double doors, now closed, from the hallway beyond and the streetlights that cast a yellow glow across the furniture and made strange shadows dance to and fro. If an unsuspecting visitor might have ventured into the room it is more than likely they would have died from fright at finding a horrific face hanging upside down in the window, peering in with red glowing eyes and scanning the area, its hideous grin showing rows of sharp teeth. Slowly two hands glided down the window pane and tried to find a possible way to get fingers between the ledge and frame, but to no avail. A knife with a wavy blade appeared and slowly it slid betwixt the wood and with the slightest crack, that echoed through the room the frame lifted and four gloved fingers appeared. Luckily the chill of the night air had caused the wood to contract and it made it easier to slide the window upward so that the figure could pull itself inside.
Tony found that he had to use all of his strength in order to keep the window open while simultaneously hauling himself across the windowsill, but he managed and came in with his back towards the floor. Dragging his body up he landed with both feet against the hardwood and gently let the window slide back down. Placing the blade back in the wangaraka he crouched down and looked around for any signs of life. It was dead quiet and gloomy, the only sound he could hear was his own shallow breath and the beating of his heart. His trip to the station earlier that day had provided him with a lot of information, not his discussion with Chief Swan who had basically given him the same song and dance from their on air interview, but he knew where to find what he was looking for. He needed to know who that surviving member was and where he was at the moment. The skull and diamond logo was a dead end without another lead to follow and this man might be able to give him more to work with. Not taking any chances he continued to stay low as he moved through the labyrinth of desks towards Chief Swan’s office. To his surprise the door wasn’t locked and he quietly entered, still crouching. Once inside he rose, since the blinds were all pulled. Many things could be said about Chief Swan, but that he was neat was not one of them. By all accounts he was organized, well informed and in the know, but it was most likely not due to his ability, or lack thereof, to keep order in his office. The gloominess of the room made it difficult to find anything and with papers piled upon papers, several coffee cups strewn everywhere and half eaten bagels and donuts stacked on top of each other the task wasn’t made easier. He produced a small electrical torch to aid the search and with a sigh began scanning the mountains of objects before him. Several of the taller skyscraper like stacks were easy to eliminate from the search due to the layer of dust covering them. Those covered most of the regular surfaces, like tables, parts of the desk and even the odd flower pedestal. On the leather couch standing off to one side and the office chair were, what looked to be, more recent documents so he started there. He could quickly put them to rest by looking at the dates of the first paper, so he moved to the piles on the floor. As the electric light passed over the range of documents and leftover dishes he noticed the box of donuts he had brought earlier in the day, but also that it was atop a tan folder. Quickly he moved the box out of the way, noticed that Swan had managed to get jelly filling on the folder, but opened it anyway.
It was a report filed by a Detective Garfield Teague and it detailed the facts in the case so far, or at least what they knew so far. It noted that they now knew the contents of the crates, cocaine, but from whence it came they had no idea at this time. The truck and its cargo belonged to a newer crime family by the name of the Lonergans and they were of Irish decent, their representatives had all perished down in the parking structure. According to the report the other victims were under the leadership of Henry ‘Baz’ Peterson, but he was not the head of whatever group purchasing the drugs. All men connected to Peterson, some named and some not had also been killed, save for one and here was a dilemma; the name of that person had been blacked out. There actually seemed to be two names, or one fairly long one, whichever it was impossible to read it. There was no other information to be had, only that the men had not killed each other that day. Teague believed there to have been a third party, whose agenda he did not know, someone who used a blade. That he had manage to find this information could only mean that he had spoken to the survivor, the name that at the moment eluded Tony. He turned the report over in his hands and flipped through all the papers fro additional clues and found that something was written in blue ink on the back of file. In Chief Swan’s beautiful cursive script it read; Black Diamond? Tony tapped his index finger on the name, what did it mean? Was this a clue to whoever The Lonergans were working with? Whatever it was it was a start, he still needed to find the survivor before he died from his wounds or worse was taken out by his colleagues. He placed the torch on the desk and proceeded to place the box of donuts back on top of the file when he noticed something. There was a notepad lying there, it was empty, but the light from the torch shining at it from an angle revealed the indentations of Swan’s familiar handwriting. It was a long shot but he picked it up and shone the light across the bleach white paper.
It was from the day before. A note giving Detective Teague access to a patient at St. Mary’s Hospital, room 506. It was addressed to the hospital staff, as well as the officers on duty. There was a name as well, two names in fact; Martin Lindquist and Maury Hammer. It might be a dead end, but it was all he had to go on at the moment. Suddenly he heard the doors to the room outside the office open. He turned off the torch and sat down by the desk. He slowly crawled across the floor towards the couch and gently climbed the creaking leather, making sure he didn’t knock over any piles. The put two fingers between the lower blinds and peered out. All he could see was a shape. A large frame of a man, wearing a hat, carrying a flashlight that illuminated the room. Due to the light in the person’s hand he could see that the man wore a beard and glasses, but not much more. The fgure moved slowly from desk to desk, rifling through filing cabinets and drawers very clearly looking for something, or possibly anything that might be of interest.
After having been up on the dais, as well as having been startled by the ringing of one of the phones, the light was aimed at the office. Tony had to think quickly, there was no way he would manage to exit the room without the man noticing him, he would have to hide. Silently he leapt from the couch, hit a roll and curled up next to the door. The figure opened the office door, which thankfully opened inward and entered. This figure had more knowledge than Tony of how Chief Swan kept his office and ignored the various piles and headed straight for the desk. He moved the box and paged through the file, but seemed unfulfilled by the contents. Letting out a sigh the man opened the box and grabbed and pastry from inside. Taking a bite the unmistakable sound of custard dripping onto clothes could be heard and the figure let out an even bigger sigh, before quickly exiting the office and slamming the door behind him, completely ignoring the noise it made.
Tony waited for the double doors to close before he exited the office and headed for the window again, he had a lead, whatever it meant.

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